Good afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen of the Media!
1. I have invited you in order to inform the nation through you that a fourth case of COVID-19 has been recorded in Namibia. Like the first three cases, the latest case is also travel-related. It involves a 19-year-old Namibian citizen who arrived in Namibia from London on 18 March and presented to a local doctor on 19th March 2020 in Windhoek with symptoms. Specimens were taken and sent to a laboratory, and the results returned positive. He is currently in isolation and in stable condition. The MOHSS-led response is actively following up with all contacts of this person to ensure proper quarantine and monitoring for symptoms.
2. The National Disaster Risk Management Committee met today and has proposed additional measures that will be announced soon.
Arrival of Namibians from COVID-19 high-risk Countries.
3. As has been reported, 35 Namibians arrived on 21 March 2020 from Netherlands with KLM airline. These returning residents came from various COVID-19 high-risk countries, mostly in Europe, and also USA and Canada.
4. Upon arrival they were screened at the airport, as per procedure. They are currently placed under a 14-day supervised quarantine in Windhoek district, as per the provisions of the State of Emergency. As per international practice persons are quarantined at their own cost. However, for this first case, the group has been provided with meals and some basic supplies. From 24 March 2020, their families are expected to provide them with meals that will be delivered at the Emergency Operations Centre in Windhoek for delivery to the quarantine facility. The meals must the properly labeled to facilitate distribution. Containers used to deliver food or other items to the quarantine facility will only be returned to the owners after the quarantine period. This is done to prevent possible transmission of the virus.
5. None of the persons under quarantine are displaying any symptoms
consistent with the COVID-19 standard case definition. Family members of these individuals as well as members of the public are strongly discouraged from visiting the facility during this period. Arrangements are in place to facilitate delivery of essential items, such as food.
6. Another group (number yet to be confirmed) is expected to arrive in
Namibia also from The Netherlands on 26's March 2020. They will also be quarantined. Arrangements are currently underway for their quarantine.
7. The public is encouraged to continue avoiding crowds; wash hands
regularly with soap and running water or apply alcohol-based hand rub/sanitizer, avoid touching your face, and stay away from other people when sick. The main symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.
8. Finally, I urge the private service providers to immediately report any suspected case to the Ministry. This will facilitate early contact tracing and minimize the spread of the virus.
Those having any concern that they may have COVID-19 signs and symptoms or other questions can call the MoHSS hotline at 0800 100 100.Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Ministry of Health and Social Services, Namibia.